Conflict and Confrontation

The very words conflict and confrontation often make people immediately wary, and many people will immediately back off any situation that could give rise to either of these two possibilities.

This is true to an extent even in an alcoholic home, which is likely to have experienced extreme examples of conflict and confrontation quite possibly for a very long time.

When an alcoholic enters a rehab/treatment center it is quite likely that the dynamic of the family home has become extremely bitter and twisted.

There are likely to be many reasons for this that can take quite a long time to unpick.

A rehab that is really focused on the long term good of the family will realise that an initial period of separation by the alcoholic and the family can give both parties a space that is desperately needed.

It is also part of the job of a rehab to prepare both parties to move forward again after the alcoholic has left a rehab/treatment center.

This is a bit of a generalisation based on the assumption that an alcoholic is living at home with a family.

This is not always true but is a fair enough model for people to draw distinctions from.

A rehab will certainly work on the basis that whoever has been in an alcoholic’s life with them prior to admission to a rehab/treatment center will have been in a serious amount of conflict with them.

The nature of conflict and confrontation in an alcoholic home is not normally a healthy one.

Conflict and confrontation can be extremely healthy, when approached by people who are genuinely trying to resolve difficult situations.

A rehab/treatment center will be a place where an alcoholic is admitted to largely because their own life has at some level broken down so much or become so unmanageable that they cannot carry on on their own.

Part of the process of that unmanageability will have been a very unhealthy relationship with most of the people, which may not be many in number, left in the life of an alcoholic at that point.

A rehab/treatment center will in some sense be a safe place physically, and emotionally, where the different parties can begin to get some distance from each other and hopefully see some of the distortions behind their thinking that have generated much of this ununmanageability.

Part of this conflict and confrontation will be what is known simply as the blame game.

The nature of blame is quite a complicated one, suffice to say that an alcoholic is likely to blame pretty much everyone for what is going on in his or her life, and the family is likely to blame the alcoholic for the problems in their lives.

Whilst some of this may be true, it is unlikely all to be true. Whilst in a rehab, the alcoholic will have time to begin to own some of this anger and blame, and dump it in the rehab, either on staff or in some type of group therapy.

This is actually an important function of a rehab, and should be encouraged.

There is always a danger that long-term, an alcoholic will simply carry on trying to blame other people for their lives.

That is out of the control of a rehab and its environment, and is more to do with the long-term mental health of the alcoholic themselves.

Part of the job of a rehab is to open up a sense of awareness of alcoholism and how it affects people.

It is quite likely that a rehab will want in patients to attend meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous, and their awareness of the illness will be deepened by such attendance.